Closure of the Arlberg Road Tunnel from 21 April to 14 November 2015

The Arlberg Road Tunnel on the S 16 Arlberg expressway between Tyrol and Vorarlberg will be closed to all traffic in both directions from 21 April to 14 November 2015. The reason: Extensive refurbishment measures and the installation of additional evacuation routes for more safety.
However, ASFINAG has worked with the authorities, emergency services and the provinces of Vorarlberg and Tyrol in advance of the closure to put measures in place that allow traffic to flow via alternative routes during this period with the fewest possible problems.
These alternative routes lead via the Arlberg Pass road (B 197/L 197) or regionally via Switzerland or Germany.

Important information at a glance
The almost 14 kilometre-long Arlberg Road Tunnel between St. Anton in Tyrol and Langen in Vorarlberg is not only the longest single-tube road tunnel in Austria. It is also the only east-west link on the primary road network between Tyrol and Vorarlberg that is open throughout the winter. After 35 years in operation, all electrical installations such as video surveillance, emergency call and wireless equipment, fire alarms as well as the road drainage systems and extinguishing water lines will be made state-of-the-art. A high-pressure misting system will be installed in the vehicular area of the tunnel in order to provide a safe evacuation route in the event of an incident. Thirty-seven additional evacuation routes and eight further breakdown bays will also be created during the construction period. All safety measures and the latest technical innovations, such as a thermal scanner or the acoustic tunnel monitoring system, will help to make Austria's longest tunnel even safer for the 8,000 drivers that use it every day.

Because the safety facilities in the Arlberg Road Tunnel are to be renewed, it will not be possible to drive safely through the tunnel during this time. For this reason, the full closure from 21 April to 14 November 2015 is unavoidable. You can find more information on the schedule of works in the Arlberg Road Tunnel here.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Who is allowed to divert via the Arlberg Pass road (B197/L197)?

 

 

Cars, estate cars and lorries without a trailer as well as cars and estate cars with a trailer (including caravan) can use the pass without restriction as long as the trailer does not weigh more than 750 kilograms. These must divert around Arlberg via the wider region through Germany, over the Fern Pass or through Switzerland in the period from 9.00am on Saturday to 10.00pm on Sunday and 9.00am to 10.00pm on public holidays.
However, ASFINAG recommends allowing more time for the journey over the Arlberg Pass. Heavy traffic may cause delays on the B 197 Arlberg Pass road, especially on weekends.

 

A general driving ban applies to lorries with a trailer and to lorries on the B 197/L 197 Arlberg Pass road for the duration of the full closure (21 April to 14 November 2015) of the Arlberg Road Tunnel. These vehicles must divert via the wider region (see alternative routes). A clearly defined destination and origin traffic regulation also enables lorries with a trailer and articulated vehicles to use the Arlberg Pass if the journeys satisfy the corresponding exemption regulations (see exemption regulations). A special exemption approval for these journeys is not necessary. A general driving ban applies to lorries with a trailer and articulated vehicles on weekends (9.00am on Saturday to 10.00pm on Sunday).

There are no restrictions on motorcycles during the entire period of the full closure. The Arlberg Pass can be used by motorcyclists at any time.
However, ASFINAG recommends allowing more time for the journey over the Arlberg Pass. Heavy traffic may cause delays on the B 197 Arlberg Pass road, especially on weekends.

 

Cars with a trailer and estate cars with a trailer (including caravan) can use the pass without restriction as long as the trailer does not weigh more than 750 kilograms. These must divert around Arlberg via the wider region through Germany, over the Fern Pass or through Switzerland in the period from 9.00am on Saturday to 10.00pm on Sunday and 9.00am to 10.00pm on public holidays.
ASFINAG recommends allowing more time for the journey over the Arlberg Pass. Heavy traffic may cause delays on the B 197 Arlberg Pass road, especially on weekends.

 

 

No restrictions are imposed on crossing the Arlberg Pass for vehicles over 3.5 tonnes that are not towing a trailer, or for buses with and without trailer and motor homes.
ASFINAG recommends allowing more time for the journey over the Arlberg Pass. Heavy traffic may cause delays on the B 197 Arlberg Pass road, especially on weekends.

 

The conditions governing journeys over the pass during the closure of the Arlberg Road Tunnel as per the ordinance of Landeck district authority can be downloaded here.

FAQs on the closure of the Arlberg Road Tunnel

Why does the tunnel have to be closed at all? 

How long will the Arlberg Road Tunnel be closed for?

What will happen to my annual toll pass when the Arlberg Road Tunnel is closed?

Can I drive my car over the Arlberg Pass?

What does destination OR origin traffic mean if I'm driving a lorry?

What does destination AND origin traffic mean if I'm driving a lorry?

Can I drive my mobile home over the Arlberg Pass in summer?

Is there a driving ban if I'm towing a caravan?

What alternative routes are available to me during the closure of the Arlberg Road Tunnel?

Why isn't ASFINAG building a second tunnel tube for the Arlberg Road Tunnel?

Will the closure prevent me from getting to my holiday destination in winter 2015?

Can I drive through the Arlberg Road Tunnel during the next winter in 2015/2016?

What is ASFINAG building to make me feel even safer in the Arlberg Road Tunnel?

What must I note while driving on the Arlberg Pass road during the closure?

Will the closure prevent me from getting to my holiday destination in summer 2015?

 

Why does the tunnel have to be closed at all?

The refurbishment of the Arlberg Road Tunnel, which has been in operation for 36 years, also includes the complete renovation of the tunnel's operating and safety installations. It is not possible to ensure safe transit of the tunnel without these installations. For this reason, ASFINAG has done everything it can to keep these necessary closures in 2015 and 2017 as short as possible. Due to the scope of the improvement measures and the replacement of the operating and safety installations, it is not possible to refurbish an almost 14 kilometre-long tunnel without closing it completely.

 

How long will the Arlberg Road Tunnel be closed for?

The first closure will start on 21 April 2015 and last until 14 November 2015. The second closure is scheduled for 2017 in the period from 18 April 2017 to 26 September 2017.

 

What will happen to my annual toll pass when the Arlberg Road Tunnel is closed?

The validity of the annual toll pass for the S 16 Arlberg expressway will automatically be extended by the period of the closure if the validity of the pass is affected by the period of either of the two full closures. This is intended to ensure that customers will not suffer any disadvantage from the full closures when buying an annual toll pass.

 

Can I drive my car over the Arlberg Pass?

During the full closure, cars can use the Arlberg Pass road (B 197/L 197) without restriction. Restrictions apply only to cars towing a trailer weighing over 750 kilograms. There is a driving ban over the Arlberg Pass in the period from 9.00am on Saturday to 10.00pm on Sunday and from 9.00am to 10.00pm on public holidays.

 

What does destination OR origin traffic mean if I'm driving a lorry?

The loading place (e.g. collection of goods) or the unloading place (final area of the journey) must be situated in the defined area. If so, the journey over the Arlberg Pass is possible during this period. Pure transit journeys are therefore not allowed. An alternative route through the wider region must be used.

 

What does destination AND origin traffic mean if I'm driving a lorry?

The loading and unloading locations must be situated in the defined areas. Any use as a "pure" transit route - such as to shorten a journey or transit the area - is therefore not allowed.

 

Can I drive my mobile home over the Arlberg Pass in summer?

A mobile home or trailer can use the pass at any time without restriction. However, towed caravans are subject to the restriction as defined in the ordinance for towing a trailer.

 

Is there a driving ban if I'm towing a caravan?

Restrictions apply to cars towing a caravan (car with trailer over 750 kilograms). There is a driving ban over the Arlberg Pass in the period from 9.00am on Saturday to 10.00pm on Sunday and from 9.00am to 10.00pm on public holidays.

 

What alternative routes are available to me during the closure of the Arlberg Road Tunnel?

  • Arlberg Pass road (B 197/L 197)
  • Fern Pass (B 179)
  • Rosenheim-Munich route (Germany)
  • Gotthard (Switzerland)
  • San Bernardino (Switzerland)

Why isn't ASFINAG building a second tunnel tube for the Arlberg Road Tunnel?

ASFINAG is solely a user-financed company and, apart from the revenues raised from vignettes, lorry tolls and special tolls, does not receive any grants from the federal budget of the Republic of Austria. Around 8,000 vehicles currently use the Arlberg Road Tunnel each day - this route is not forecast to reach the figure of 20,000 vehicles per day on average (total of both directions of travel). According to the Road Tunnel Safety Act, construction of a second tube is only prescribed once the frequency exceeds this level. ASFINAG is therefore investing EUR 160 million in order to increase safety for the 8,000 drivers who use the tunnel every day.

 

Will the closure prevent me from getting to my holiday destination in winter 2015?

No - in agreement with the parties responsible at the tourism authorities in the Arlberg area, ASFINAG delayed the start of the first full closure in 2015 by three weeks to 21 April 2015. This should ensure that getting to/from the current winter season is not affected.

 

Can I drive through the Arlberg Road Tunnel during the next winter in 2015/2016?

Yes - a prerequisite for planning the extensive measures in the Arlberg Road Tunnel was that the tunnel was available as an unrestricted, weather-independent link between Tyrol and Vorarlberg in the winter months, especially during the daytime.

 

What is ASFINAG building to make me feel even safer in the Arlberg Road Tunnel?

The measures include 37 additional evacuation routes via the ventilation duct, eight additional breakdown bays as well as the renewal of the operating and safety facilities. State-of-the-art safety technologies, such as thermal scanners, acoustic tunnel monitoring and a high-pressure misting system, will be installed in addition to the existing operating and safety installations.

 

What must I note while driving on the Arlberg Pass road during the closure?

You should expect a greater volume of traffic on this route, especially on weekends. This may result in delays to your journey. ASFINAG therefore recommends that you allow more time for the journey over the pass. The route via the Arlberg Pass has gradients of up to 13 percent, which should also be taken into consideration during your journey. Our safety tip: Pay attention to your speed and keep a safe distance from other road users.

 

Will the closure prevent me from getting to my holiday destination in summer 2015?

No – your journey to your summer holiday destinations in the Arlberg region (St. Anton, St. Christoph, Lech-Zürs, Stuben) is not affected by the closure of the Arlberg road tunnel. The main alternative regional route is the Arlberg pass road which connects all the destinations of the Arlberg tourism region from both directions (coming from Vorarlberg and Tirol). This should ensure that getting to/from the summer season 2015 is not affected.

 

Exemption regulations for lorries with a trailer & articulated vehicles

In accordance with the stipulated exemptions, lorries with a trailer and articulated vehicles may use the Arlberg Pass if the journeys satisfy the exemption regulations explained below. Each exemption regulation applies for the period from 10.00pm on Sunday to 9.00am on Saturday as follows:#

 

Local destination and origin traffic

  • Lorries with a trailer and articulated vehicles may use the Arlberg Pass if the journeys commence OR end in the districts of Bludenz, Feldkirch or Landeck. This regulation concerns local destination and origin traffic.

THAT MEANS
The loading place (e.g. collection of goods) or the unloading place (final area of the journey) must be situated in the area defined above. If so, the journey over the Arlberg Pass is possible during this period.

Northwest-southeast traffic

  • Lorries with a trailer and articulated vehicles may use the pass if journeys originate AND end in Vorarlberg, Liechtenstein, in the rural districts of Bodensee, Konstanz, Sigmaringen, Tuttlingen, Schwarzwald-Baar, Rottweil, in the cantons of St. Gallen, Thurgau, Appenzell Innerrhoden, Appenzell Ausserrhoden or Glarus and the provinces of Bolzano, Trento or Belluno. This regulations concerns northwest-southeast traffic.

THAT MEANS
The loading and unloading locations must be situated in any of the areas defined above. Any use as a "pure" transit route - such as to shorten a journey or transit the area - is therefore not allowed.

West-east traffic

  • Lorries with a trailer and articulated vehicles may use the pass if the journeys originate AND end in Vorarlberg, Liechtenstein, in the rural districts of Bodensee, Konstanz, Sigmaringen, Tuttlingen, Schwarzwald-Baar, Rottweil, in the cantons of St. Gallen, Thurgau, Appenzell Innerrhoden, Appenzell Ausserrhoden, Glarus, Schwyz, Zug, Zurich, Schaffhausen, the municipalities of Graubünden canton (Ardez, Calfreisen, Castiel, Chur, Conters i. P., Davos, Fanas, Felsberg, Fläsch, Fideris, Flims, Ftan, Furna, Grüsch, Guarda, Haldenstein, Igis, Jenaz, Jerina, Klosters-Serneus, Küblis, Laax, Langwies, Lavin, Lüen, Luzein, Maienfeld, Maladars, Malans, Mastrils, St. Antönien, St. Ant.-Ascharina, St. Peter, Susch, Tamins, Tarasp, Trimmis, Trin, Tschlin, Untervaz, Valzeina or Zizers) and in the Tyrolean districts of Landeck, Imst, Innsbruck-Stadt, Innsbruck-Land or Schwaz. This concerns west-east traffic.

THAT MEANS
The loading and unloading locations must be situated in the areas defined above. Any use as a "pure" transit route - such as to shorten a journey or transit the area - is therefore not allowed.

Timetable Arlberg Road Tunnel

Contacts for inquiries

QUESTIONS ON THE PROJECT, WORK OR CONSTRUCTION SITE:

Dipl.-HTL-Ing Christoph Wanker, project manager ASFINAG Bau Management GmbH
Email: christoph.wanker@asfinag.at

Mario Patigler, project manager ASFINAG Bau Management GmbH
Email: mario.patigler@asfinag.at
 

QUESTIONS ON PUBLIC RELATIONS WORK:

Alexander Holzedl, press spokesperson ASFINAG
Email: alexander.holzedl@asfinag.at
 

QUESTIONS ON THE ALTERNATIVE ROUTES, DRIVING BANS OR QUESTIONS OF A GENERAL NATURE:

ASFINAG Service Center, Tel.: 0800 400 12 400